Team Sorts: Adapting Sort It for Cooperative Learning Groups

Reading Simplified uses Sort It to teach Advanced Phonics rapidly. Sort It is typically used in homogeneous small groups with teacher guidance. In this workshop, master teacher and past Arizona ELL Teacher of the Year Jennifer Glueck shares how she has adapted Sort It for cooperative group work in her first grade classroom as well. She calls these Team Sorts. Students work in table groups to sort a word list cooperatively after Jennifer has previously introduced the new sound to the whole class and worked with teacher-led small groups.

Below we share Sort It word lists teachers may use for Team Sorts, as well as in small group and one-on-one instruction. The words have been culled from Fry’s Top 1000 and The First 4,000 Words Project high-frequency word lists. There are two levels of challenge: mostly one-syllable words and multisyllable words. You will find blank Sort It pages for each Advanced Phonics sound in the Materials section of the Sort It unit.

Jennifer introduces a new Advanced Phonics sound via Sort It initially to the whole class using a SmartBoard presentation. Jennifer has generously shared the resources she created below. These include the Key Sentences for each Advanced Phonics sound and example words with the target sound. The SmartBoard version includes words that can be touched in any order to make the word cover disappear.* In the PowerPoint version, you click to make the word covers disappear, but the covers will disappear in order instead of being random. Jennifer’s Key Sentences vary slightly from the ones in the Reading Simplified Academy but still do the trick!

The main workshop video shows Jennifer introducing a new sound via whole class Sort It and using Team Sorts in cooperative groups. Please note that sections of Jennifer’s classroom recordings are from different weeks so there is a different sound focus (/ay/ and /er/). The second, shorter video shows Jennifer doing a morning warm-up with her class using Read It with a Key Sentence.

We are so grateful to Jennifer for giving us this invaluable look into her classroom!

*Please note: teachers with SmartBoard technology may want to update the image on the /aw/ slide. We have updated the image in the PowerPoint.

Download Key Sentences.notebook

Download Key Sentences.pptx

Download Sort It Word lists

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